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Luis Medina. Photo by Chris Jones.

Yankees MiLB Previews

Pinstriped Previews: The other affiliates join the party

Since Scranton Wilkes-Barre was rained out on Thursday night, the Yankees organization had a night off. Today, all four major affiliates are in action on the same day for the first time this season.

While all four affiliates are on the road to begin the season, managers will make their debut at new levels and top prospects such as Trey Sweeney and Anthony Volpe will make their debuts for different affiliates.

Check out who will take the ball tonight across the organization with our Pinstriped Previews:

Deivi Garcia (Photo by Matt Bufano)

Triple-A

 Scranton Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (2-0) vs. Syracuse Mets (0-2)

4:05 PM ET (Game 1) I NBT Bank Stadium

Game 1: RHP Deivi Garcia vs. TBD

Game 2: RHP Ryan Weber vs. TBD

The RailRiders starting pitchers have yet to allow an earned run in 2022. Deivi Garcia will try to continue that streak in Game 1 of the doubleheader. Garcia may not have won an Opening Day roster spot, but the velocity was strong in spring training and it could lead to better things from him in 2022.

Last year, the 22-year-old struggled at Triple-A as he went 3-7 with a 6.85 ERA in 24 games (22 starts). Opponents hit .285 against Garcia as he struck out 97 batters and walked 62 over the course of 90.2 innings. He will look to turn the page to 2022 against a Syracuse offense that has scored three runs in the first two games.

In Game 2, Ryan Weber will take the mound for Scranton Wilkes-Barre. Weber was signed by the Yankees to a minor league contract back in March. Weber pitched for three different teams (Red Sox, Brewers, Mariners) at the Triple-A level in 2021. The 31-year-old went 6-5 with a 4.18 ERA in 19 games (18 starts). He struck out 102 batters while walking only 13 in 103.1 innings of work.

Weber does not have much velocity on his fastball, but he has four pitches in his arsenal to go with the heater (curveball, cutter, slider, and changeup). Plus, according to FanGraphs, he induced a groundball against opposing hitters 53.1% of the time.

While it is unknown which game he will pitch in, expect Jose Rodriguez to start one of the two games for Syracuse. Rodriguez was in the Braves organization a season ago and signed a minor league deal with the Mets back in March. In 19 appearances (17 starts) with Gwinnett, the 26-year-old right-hander went 6-6 with a 5.29 ERA and had 66 strikeout to 21 walks in 78.1 innings of work.

Estevan Florial has had a good start to the season for the RailRiders. He is 3-for-7 on the season (all extra-base hits) with two home runs and four RBIs hitting at the top of the order.

Anthony Volpe. Photo by Matt Kardos

Double-A

Somerset Patriots vs. Reading Fightin’ Phils

6:45 PM I FirstEnergy Stadium

RHP Luis Medina vs. RHP James McArthur

The Patriots will begin the 2022 season in Pennsylvania for a quick three-game series against Reading. They will send Luis Medina to the mound in Dan Fiorito’s debut as Somerset manager.

Medina was promoted to Double-A back in June. In 15 games (14 starts) with the Patriots, the 22-year-old went 4-3 with a 3.67 ERA. He had 83 strikeouts to 41 walks in 73.2 innings of work.

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While Medina can struggle with commanding his fastball at times, he did end the 2021 season on a good note. In his last four starts, he was 1-0 with a 1.59 ERA, had 25 strikeouts (9 walks) in 22.2 innings, and held opponents to just a .207 batting average.

As for Reading, they will send 25-year-old James McArthur to the mound. The 12th Round pick of the Phillies back in 2018 is in his second season at Double-A. Last year, he was 2-6 with a 4.48 ERA in 19 games (15 starts). He had 78 strikeouts to 23 walks in 74.1 innings of work with opponents hitting .258.

All eyes in this game will be on Somerset’s shortstop, Anthony Volpe. The 1st Round pick back in 2019 will be hitting in the leadoff spot tonight.

Matt Sauer (Photo by John Brophy/Pinstriped Prospects)

High-A

Hudson Valley Renegades vs. Greenville Drive

7:05 PM I Fluor Field at the West End

RHP Matt Sauer vs. TBD

While the Yankees and Red Sox face off in the Bronx, their High-A affiliates will open the season against each other. In Tyson Blaser’s first game as Hudson Valley manager, he sends Matt Sauer to the mound.

Sauer was promoted to High-A last August. In his eight starts with the Renegades, he went 3-2 with a 5.20 ERA. He had 51 strikeouts to 15 walks over the course of 45 innings while holding opponents to a .205 batting average.

As a starter in the Renegades rotation, Sauer was one of the pitchers who would give the team length in his outings. The 23-year-old went at least five innings in every High-A start he had a season ago. One pitch to watch going into this opening game is his slider. According to our own Hugh McKenna, Sauer told him he has changed his grip on that pitch, so it will be fun to see what change happens because of that.

The fun matchup to watch in this game is going to be the talent that is in the infield on both sides. For Hudson Valley, 2021 1st-Round pick, shortstop Trey Sweeney, is expected to make his High-A debut. For Greenville, their infield has a lot of talent with Nick Yorke at second base (2020 1stRound pick) and shortstop Matthew Lugo (2019 2nd Round pick).

Tyrone Yulie (Photo by John Brophy / Pinstriped Prospects)

Low-A

Tampa Tarpons vs. Lakeland Flying Tigers

6:30 PM I Publix Field at Joker Marchant Stadium

RHP Tyrone Yulie vs. TBD I YES App

Once the Yankees game concludes Friday afternoon, the YES Network App will have coverage of Rachel Balkovec’s managerial debut for the Low-A Tarpons. It gives Yankees fans one of the rare chances to watch outfielder Jasson Dominguez in action.

Dominguez is back with the Tarpons after playing 49 games in Tampa a year ago. He had a slash line of .258/.346/.398 with five home runs and 18 RBIs. At just 19 years ago, it is no surprise Dominguez remains at Low-A to continue his development. He will be in a talented lineup that includes catcher Antonio Gomez, shortstop Alexander Vargas, and power-hitting outfielder Anthony Garcia among others.

The Tarpons will go with Tyrone Yulie in the season opener. Yulie got called up from the Florida Complex League to Tampa in July last season. In nine games (eight starts) with the Tarpons, the 20-year-old went 1-1 with a 8.89 ERA. He struck out 37 batters and walked 26 over the course of 28.1 innings.

It was a small sample size, but Yulie had the tendency to give up the long ball as he allowed five home runs and opposing hitters had an .OPS of .903 against him a year ago. With that being said, Yulie can touch 100 mph with his fastball, so the velocity is there. It is all about commanding that pitch going forward.

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While it is unknown who will start for the Flying Tigers in the series opener as of right now, one name fans might hopelly see is RHP Jackson Jobe. Jobe was selected with the third-overall pick in last year’s draft out of Heritage High School in Oklahoma.

Written By

I am an alum of St. John's University, where I majored in sports management.

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